A fractional chief operating officer, or COO, handles the big-picture operation needs of a business on a part-time basis. The fractional COO helps the owner or CEO with growth challenges until the day comes when the company is ready to hire or promote a full-time COO.
When a business finds itself struggling to deal with the tasks that need to be done to grow a business or even to figure out what those tasks are, a fractional COO can help take them from where they are now to where they want to be without falling between the cracks.
What is a Fractional COO?
A fractional COO handles the big-picture strategic operations by developing, planning, and executing, in conjunction with your current leadership team and managers, the tasks necessary for a smooth-running business. A fractional COO also works closely with the CEO, owner, and/or the leadership team on achieving long-term goals of the company.
Planning and strategizing. Growing a business takes planning. A good fractional COO takes the lead in “planning the planning,” so to speak. They will devise planning sessions, arrange strategy meetings with staff to keep teams on the same page, and ensure all parts of the company are working towards the same goals of growing the business.
Team building and communications. A growing business typically needs more people in a hurry. Keeping a sense of community within a growing business can be difficult. Your fractional COO will know how to foster relationships inside your company and coordinate between the sections as they take on their own projects.
Benefits of a Fractional COO
A small or midsize company looking to become a large one or even a large company that wants to go public may not have the need or budget for a full-time COO, but all of these companies still need someone in that position part of the time. A fractional COO fills that void by being an outside contractor who is available on a reoccurring basis.
Lower costs, higher expectations. The fractional COO is a part-time or contract worker. As a contractor, the fractional COO saves your company money by billing on a per-project or monthly basis.
Flexibility. You may want a fractional COO to help make the transition to corporate life a smooth one, or you may just need one periodically for expertise in a new area of business. The fractional COO can tailor their contract to your specifications.
Delegation. As an outside agent, the fractional COO has an interest in spotting valuable players inside your organization and training them to take on key duties within the company. An outside viewpoint enables the COO to delegate duties effectively without internal bias. Moreover, a fractional COO that is adept at asking questions and processing large amounts of information allows her or him to offer real-time strategic course corrections and feedback to ensure the company’s immediate and long-term goals are met.
A fractional COO and a fractional GC are your business advisor and attorney, respectively. A growing business needs this support on its leadership team to move past today and into the future. At MNK, we understand this and can provide the additional help you need in operating your growing business.
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